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Man who shared New Zealand mosque shooting video gets 21-month sentence

Philip Arps, a Christchurch businessman, sent the video to 30 people, the judge said.

Armed police officers stand guard outside the Al Noor mosque in Christchurch in May.
Sanka Vidanagama / AFP/Getty Images

A man who shared a video of the deadly New Zealand mosque shooting received a 21-month prison sentence on Tuesday. Philip Arps pleaded guilty to two counts of distributing the video of the March 15 attacks, which were livestreamed by the shooter as he killed 51 people.

Judge Stephen O'Driscoll noted that Arps, who runs a business in Christchurch, sent the video to 30 people, according to Associated Press. He also asked someone to add crosshairs and a kill count in an effort to create a meme, but there was no evidence he shared that.

Arps apparently showed no empathy for the victims as he was questioned about the video. He was among six people charged with illegally redistributing it.

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Facebook struggled to keep footage of the mass shooting off its site and was criticized after its artificial intelligence systems couldn't automatically detect video of the terrorist attack. In the weeks following the massacre, the social network said that the 17-minute video wasn't reported while it was live. The first report came 12 minutes after it ended.

However, it was then uploaded over a million times by users. Facebook purged 1.5 million of these uploads, and 1.2 million were blocked.

Last month, the social network introduced a one-strike policy banning people from its livestreaming feature for a set period of time if they violate certain community guidelines.